Massachusetts community summit takes aim at improving middle schools

Posted by Aja Williams on
America's Promise Alliance

When one of a number of GradNation Community Summits head to Springfield, Mass. Nov. 6, middle school – not high school – students will be the focus for improving graduation rates.

According to research from Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University, 75 percent of eventual dropouts in high poverty rate school districts can be identified between the sixth and ninth grades. A little more than half of students – 56 percent -- in Springfield earn a high school diploma, according to Springfield Public Schools.

According to, eight of Springfield’s middle schools are underperforming, and state leaders are considering a plan that would band the schools together to turn them around.

During the summit, leaders will discuss what has been learned from youth, parents, educators and the community and work to become a part of the solution to middle school success. The GradNation Community summits are an extension of America’s Promise Alliance's work to increase high school graduation rates.

More than 100 communities across the country are hosting the summits.

For more information on the GradNation Community Summits, visit the America’s Promise Alliance website.

To read the full article on Massachusetts’ efforts to focus on improving middle school outcomes, visit the website.